CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
NQF: PREPARING FOR ASSESSMENT AND RATING EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION AND CARE SERVICES (ECEC) CENSUS IT'S AEDI TIME: RESEARCH TO SUPPORT OUR CHILDREN RELAXATION IS A MUST HOW TO DEVELOP AN EFFECTIVE EARLY YEARS CURRICULUM THAT INCLUDES PERFORMING ARTS TO SUPPORT NQS & EYLF GET READY FOR TAX TIME AND THE NEW FINANCIAL YEAR NOW! INCLUSION: THE RIGHT TO BELONG IMPROVE YOUR OUTLOOK AND FREE UP 2-3 WORKING WEEKS A YEAR DEBT RECOVERY “KIDS ALIVE DO THE FIVE” GROSS MOTOR PROGRAM KASS KINDERGARTEN ADVISORY SUPPORT SERVICE
Photography: Michael Marston
Does your long day care service deliver a kindergarten program? Funding is now available to support more long day care services to provide a kindergarten program delivered by an early childhood teacher. Participating services receive funding for each kindyaged child enrolled and are eligible to use the Approved Kindergarten Program symbol to promote their program. Services in disadvantaged and remote areas are also eligible for additional subsidies to help local families access kindergarten. Itâ€™s all part of the Queensland and Australian governmentsâ€™ commitment to ensure every Queensland child can access a kindergarten program in the year before Prep. For more information or to apply, visit www.qld.gov.au/kindy
Authorised by the Queensland Government, Mary St, Brisbane
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
President Peter Price
Vice President John Keast
Brent Stokes Majella Fitzsimmons
Message from Childcare Queensland President
Message from Childcare Queensland CEO
NQF: Preparing for assessment and rating
Early Childhood Education and Care Services (ECEC) Census
It's AEDI time: Research to support our children
Relaxation is a must
Treasurer Graham Sagar
Secretary Debra North
Childcare Queensland Location:11/6 Vanessa Boulevard, Springwood Mailing: PO Box 137, Springwood QLD 4127
How to Develop an Effective Early Years Curriculum that includes Performing Arts to Support NQS & EYLF
Fax: (07) 3808 2466
Get ready for tax time and the new financial year now!
Toll Free: 1300 365 325 (outside Brisbane)
Inclusion: The right to belong
Improve your Outlook and free up 2-3 working weeks a year
"Kids Alive Do The Five" Gross Motor Program
KASS Kindergarten Advisory Support Service
Telephone: (07) 3808 2366
Email: email@example.com CEO: Gwynn Bridge Senior Office Administrator: Jen Smyth
Associate Member Directory
Editor: Jen Smyth Contributors: Peter Price, Gwynn Bridge Disclaimer: Articles published in this magazine are published as a service to readers and should not be substituted for specific advice in relation to any issue. While advertising in this magazine is encouraged, Childcare Queensland accepts no responsibility for the contents of the advertisements. Advertisements are accepted in good faith and liability for advertising content, goods or services supplied is the responsibility of the advertiser.
Childcare Queensland President, Peter Price
Now that we are all 'full-on' with the new National Quality Framework, I thought that perhaps it would be helpful to our members and their management, to consider over the next few editions of the magazine how you the owner and your management team, can contribute towards your centre's achievement of the National Quality Standards. It is not just up to the staff at the coalface within your centre. You the centre owner must provide the 'vision' - and hopefully the leadership, to achieve the end result. In this issue, we will look at the 'quality' of our staff. While the quality of your staff is partly set by the people that you employ, it is also developed by the training, the inspiration, the motivation, and the guidelines that you the owner/operator set. Larger operators may employ specific management personnel for just this purpose, but the majority of smaller operators cannot afford to do this - they must do it themselves. We are a ‘people’ business – our people are our business – we do not have ‘stock’ of products to sell – we provide a ‘service’ – and this service (good or bad) is provided by our staff. Our centre image is created by the staff of the centre, and it is the necessary leadership of the centre owners, who set the foundations for this image. Without a good team of people, we are just a bunch of empty buildings – with nothing to provide. Therefore we need to have the best team of people that it is possible to get. I'm sure that many of you will say that you have a great team, while some of you will say that you are having difficulty employing 'qualified' staff, or any staff at all. Perhaps these guidelines can help. What makes ‘good’ staff ? – Do your staff want to be good team-members? The Federal Government will tell you that the most important requirement is a higher qualification, but would you believe that this requirement is not even in the top 10 characteristics. A number of surveys have been done of customers of many different types of businesses in many different countries,
and over many years. This includes parents with children in childcare. The results are always the same. The order in priority are as follows....
to help parents - such as having the child's shoes ready with their bag, when they are collected in the afternoon - will always rate highly with parents.
1. Attitude to work (most important). This is almost impossible to 'teach' at a College. It is one of the primary life skills which we are helping to develop in our children at a very early age, however we must 'have it to teach it'.
8. Attentiveness. Those staff who make the parent feel special or valued, will also always get the top feedback. These parents are the ones who will refer other parents to your centre. Those centres with poor occupancy levels should be really working on this quality of staff.
2. Grooming and appearance. If the first impression of staff is to present well to your parents, then this is the first step in the parent developing confidence in the abilities of the staff. Poorly presented staff may be the best educators in the world, and develop the most incredible programs for the children, but most times they will never get the chance to use them, as they will not have the confidence of the parents. 3. Greeting of customers (Parents). This is the first part of the 'communication' process, and you are probably aware that communication is the maker and breaker of all business relationships. 4. Clarity of speech. This is the second part of the 'communication' process. Communication courses are often conducted for receptionists and sales personnel, but are seldom done with childcare staff. 5. Signs of management or organisation. Each one of your staff is a 'leader' of children - if they are organised, then they will lead the team well. If they are disorganised, then their room will be seen as a messy rabble. 6. Friendliness. Friendly staff have a foot and a half in the door before they start. Many major worldwide employers rate this characteristic so highly because their customers rate the staff who smile, have a positive personality, with a friendly manner, as being the 'best' staff. 7. Promptness. One of the most valued assets of all working parents with children is time. This is because they have so little time to achieve all the things that they must do. Staff who waste the parents time are always going to score poorly. Those staff who are time efficient, and perhaps do little things
9. Initiative or resourcefulness. Staff who have a 'special' program up their sleeve for rainy days, or who seem to be able to produce fantastic activities from junk, are more valuable than having the best resource room in the world. They never seem to be caught short for quiet moments. 10. Appear composed or confident. When the world is crumbling around you, true leadership occurs with those people who take it all in their stride. I have seen the 'panic specialists' who go completely to pieces when the smallest disaster occurs. The important word here is 'appear'. Of course your composed image may only be on the outside, but it creates the required image. For the very adventurous management out there - survey your parents to rate your staff out of 10 on the above characteristics, and don't forget to get yourself rated. Some of these characteristics come naturally to some people, while others really have to work at them. All are achievable, and the more you practice, the easier they become. My final comment is why my team is important to me, and why I expect so much from them.... "You can dream, create, design, and build the most wonderful place in the world, but it requires people to make the dream a reality." (Walt Disney)
Peter Price President – Childcare Queensland.
Childcare Queensland CEO and Australian CHILDCARE ALLIANCE PRESIDENT, Gwynn bridge
I don’t remember when life has been busier in early learning and care and from speaking with members it appears we are all feeling the same. The new National Quality Standards are much more intense than a first look indicates and with normal centre activities and duties the additional work is certainly adding pressure. ACECQA is advising that most services will receive National Quality Standard or Working Towards National Quality Standard and that these are acceptable for this first round. It is about quality improvement. Assessments have commenced and in September we will have some indication as to how the first tranche were assessed. Childcare Queensland would love to hear of your assessments when they occur so that we can provide feedback to the authorities. Over the past month, I have attended the Prime Minister’s and the Opposition Leader’s round table discussions. Both of these showed intent to improve funding for lower income families and for disadvantaged families. Our claim is that whatever the changes may be, no families should be disadvantaged. There was discussion on rolling the Child Care Rebate into the Child Care Benefit but this would, in all probability, see CCR means tested which would affect many families. It is a huge task to work out a system that is fair and equitable and my hope is that government does not make a decision without intense consultation to ensure that there are no unintended consequences that will occur from a change in the funding model. Your federal body, the Australian Childcare Alliance (ACA) has called for a 30% increase in Child Care Benefit for children 0 – 3 years and a 15% increase for children 3 – 5 years. The thresholds also must be raised as bracket creep has seen many of our families financially disadvantaged. We estimate that CCB has devalued by 19% over the past 10 years.
Thank you to those services that encouraged families to reply to the 2012 “What Parents Want” survey. Some important facts that were revealed in that survey are: • 68% of families state that they cannot afford the 15% increase in childcare fees as predicted in the Productivity Commission’s Early Childhood Development Workforce report released in December 2011 • Rising costs will force 88% of families to reduce the days that their child is attending an Early Education and Care service • 72% of families would seek care with family members • Most alarmingly, 34.2% of families said that they would place their child into unregulated child care arrangements
What happens if there is a change of government? ACA is also concerned that there is a political influence in this initiative with targeted areas being marginal seats in the next election. Wages increases, Fair Work and Modern Award transitions are due to be implemented in the first full pay after 1 July, 2012. Transition rates are available for members on the CQ website – members section. Our next round of member’s meeting will be held in August and we look forward to seeing you all at the Childcare Queensland Conference at Jupiters Casino, Gold Coast on 14 -16th September. Regards,
• 70% of families are forced to reduce other household spending Childcare Queensland, through the Australian Childcare Alliance is advocating for CCR to be paid directly off fees so that the majority of families are receiving a more manageable account for their weekly fees.
Gwynn Bridge CEO
There is a campaign underway with the intent that any additional funding does not go to services unless an enterprise agreement is signed. This agreement would be determined by Unions, operators and government. Services who commit to this agreement would then receive funding for professional wages. There has been some discussion about a “cap” on child care fees which is untenable for the sector. ACA is concerned that this funding would be a huge impost on taxpayers and unsustainable as the initial amount claimed for the first year is $1.3 billion – as much as the Federal Government has estimated for their annual surplus and with current economic problems that surplus remains to be achieved. Funding expected from government over the next 9 years would total $15,117,571,763.00. Is this sustainable?
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
Childcare Queensland 2012 National Conference
Hands Up For The Future
Jupiters Hotel & Casino Friday 14 to Sunday 16 September 2012 Limited funding is available for travel assistance from regional and remote areas. Contact our office for details
Visit www.childcareqld.org.au to register online
NQF: Preparing for assessment and rating Prepared by – Office for Early Childhood Education and Care
he National Quality Framework (NQF) is well and truly underway and services will have begun to see some of the key changes taking place.
The last issue of Early Edition touched on preparing for assessment and ratings. As the sector prepares for the first assessment visits to commence from mid June 2012, the Office for Early Childhood Education and Care has prepared the following, to guide services on what to expect and when. Preparing for the assessment visit The first step of the assessment and rating process is the self-assessment and quality improvement planning process. Critical reflection on the philosophy, practices, policies and procedures in your service and the assessment against each of the seven quality areas of the National Quality Standard (NQS) and related regulatory standards, will help develop an informed picture of current practices and the quality of education and care being provided. By undertaking a comprehensive, open and honest self-assessment, providers and educators are empowered to identify the strengths of the service; it also provides an opportunity to put in place strategies to address areas where improvements are required before the assessment and rating visit. The involvement of management, educators, families and where possible, children in this process, is likely to provide you with a comprehensive picture of service delivery and some good suggestions for quality improvement. The information gathered in the process will assist in developing a Quality Improvement Plan for your service, remember to keep the plan succinct and prioritise the areas for improvement. A range of support material is available to assist your service to prepare for assessment and rating, including the Guide to the National Quality Standard, and recently the Guide to Assessment and Rating for Services.
The department has also released a podcast with tips to developing your Quality Improvement Plan and advice on the new process. Assessment visit The first assessment visits will commence in June 2012. Services may be starting to receive letters from the department to notify them of their first scheduled assessment. These services will have approximately six weeks to submit their Quality Improvement Plan prior to their visit. The Authorised Officer will review the service’s Plan, compliance history and the outcomes of the National Childcare Accreditation Council quality improvement processes (if applicable) before visiting the service. Prior to the visit, it is recommended parents and educators are informed of the assessment process and the expected date for the visit so they are aware of the Authorised Officer’s arrival. During the visit, the Authorised Officer will: •
observe practice across the service;
talk to educators, coordinators, directors, staff and management; and
review service documentation (programming documentation, policies and procedures).
Educators will also have an opportunity to discuss and demonstrate why and how particular practices achieve high quality outcomes, as each service will be unique in the ways in which the NQS standards are met. The relevant regulatory standards will be considered as part of the assessment and rating process.
After the assessment and rating visit Following the assessment visit, the Authorised Officer will review what they have observed and noted, and will assign a rating for each of the 18 standards, and then determine the rating for each of the seven Quality Areas and the overall rating for the service. To ensure the process is nationally consistent and reliable, a further validation process will be undertaken on services assessed and rated between June and mid October 2012. Therefore, the ratings for these services are not expected to be published before the end of 2012. The draft assessment and rating report will be provided to the service three weeks after the visit and services will have time to provide feedback before the final rating is determined. Conclusion It is important to remember the assessment visit is only one part of the process of assessing and monitoring services. One of the main aims of the NQF is a focus on continuous quality improvement and the department may review a service’s rating or request that the Quality Improvement Plan be reviewed and revised at any time. Focussed self reflection and assessment should be an ongoing process to ensure your service continues to deliver high quality outcomes for the children attending your service.
Services will also have the opportunity to provide evidence to support particular practices (records of attendance, enrolment and staffing records, policies and procedures and, where applicable, risk assessments).
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
Early Childhood Education and Care Services (ECEC) Census
he annual Early Childhood Education and Care Services (ECEC) Census will commence on 30 July this year to collect service, participation and staffing information.
In July, the Queensland Department of Education, Training and Employment (DETE) will send an email to each service with a link to a secure internet address for them to complete the Census electronically. Services for which the Department does not have an email address will be sent a hard copy of the form for completion. Services will have until 31 August to complete the survey. Census data provides information on how Queensland is performing in areas
such as the delivery of universal access to kindergarten; early childhood workforce qualifications; and the implementation of the new national legislation. Importantly, the data collected in the Census provides information to support a range of state and national decisions and is vital to the continuing growth of the sector. As in the past, a report on the collective results of this census will be published to ensure services have access to valuable information.
Further information about the Census and a printable version of the Census form will be available on the Department’s website in July http://deta.qld.gov.au/ earlychildhood/. If you have any questions or would like further information, please contact the Office for Early Childhood Education and Care on telephone (07) 3404 3401
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It’s AEDI time: Research to support our children
The AEDI provides information about how children are developing prior to starting school. From May to July 2012, the teachers of children in Prep are completing AEDI checklists based on their knowledge and observations of each child in their class.
Results are expected to be publicly released in early 2013 through a national report, online community maps and community profiles. The AEDI results allow communities to see how local children are doing relative to other children in their community and Australia. Since the release of the first national AEDI data, communities all around Australia have used the AEDI to inform their efforts in supporting young children and families to get the best start in life.
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CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
RELAXATION IS A MUST Prepared by Dr Brenda Abbey
eaching children relaxation techniques during rest time routines in early childhood education and care services would significantly increase children’s health and wellbeing, and provide them with a skill they can use throughout their lives. It would also ensure services exceed the NQS 2.1.2 and support children’s progress towards Learning Outcome 3 of the EYLF and MTOP. Meeting each child’s need for sleep, rest and relaxation sounds like a simple task for educators in early childhood education and care services. However, as any educator will tell you, especially those working with children older than three years, achieving this end is far from simple and requires educators to balance a number of competing demands. To date, services and educators have used established routines to manage rest times and these generally meet the requirements of the National Quality Standard (NQS), Education and Care National Regulations (National Regulations), Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) and My Time, Our Place (MTOP). These routines include placing the children in a quiet environment, regulating the temperature, dimming the lights and playing soft soothing music. With few exceptions, infants and toddlers who are tired fall asleep readily. However, older children who no longer feel the need for sleep during the day are often reluctant, even resistant, to rest or relax. Educators are then left to balance the needs of these children against those of the children who do need sleep or rest. In those services which have rest pause conditions on their licences, the task is often left to one educator. Usually, educators manage rest time by requiring all children to lay quietly on their beds for the first 20 to 30 minutes. After that time, children who are not asleep are provided with quiet activities such as puzzles, drawing and books for the remainder of rest time. Educators believe that these practices ensure that children who need to sleep can settle undisturbed. They also believe that these practices afford the children who do not sleep the significant physical, emotional and cognitive benefits that accompany relaxation. Further, they believe that these practices promote the children’s awareness that relaxation is
integral to a healthy lifestyle, and increase their ability to take enduring responsibility for their health and wellbeing. Educators’ beliefs about the affects of their practices on the children who do not sleep are partially correct. Relaxation does, as research evidences, bring many benefits. However, encouraging children to lay still with their eyes closed falls far short of the relaxation referred to in the research and does not increase children’s ability to assume responsibility for their own health and wellbeing. Relaxation results from using specific techniques designed to release body tension and calm the mind. It is an acquired technique, not one that comes naturally. Fortunately, the technique is simple and easy to teach. Once learned, it can be used through adulthood. Daily rest time is an ideal opportunity to teach children the technique, and the best way to teach it is to use a specially devised relaxation CD. The CD guides children through the process of tensing and relaxing each of their body parts in turn while encouraging them to breathe slowly and deeply throughout. The more familiar the children become with the CD, the more readily and more deeply they relax when it is played. Such CD's usually run for 25 to 30 minutes. It helps if educators teach children the concepts in the CD for a few days before introducing the CD. These concepts include tensing and relaxing the body, pointing and toes and opening fingers. Children will then find it easier to follow the CD's instructions. It is critical to use a relaxation CD with children rather than a meditation or visualisation CD. Using a relaxation CD will change the tenor of rest time because it meets the needs of both sleepers and non-sleepers so all children benefit from the atmosphere it brings. Most importantly, children learn how to relax – a skill that will benefit them for life.
Introducing relaxation techniques into rest routines would ensure that educators: - meet children’s need for sleep, rest and relaxation (QA 2.1.2, Reg 81); - assist children to recognise and communicate their bodily needs, such as rest (QA 2.1.2, LO 3.1) - promote children’s awareness of a healthy lifestyle (QA 2.1.2, LO 3.2); and, - increase children’s ability to assume greater responsibility for their own health and wellbeing (2.1.2, LO 3.1). Most importantly, children would be equipped with a skill that will bring them wellbeing, now, and that they can benefit from throughout their lives. Best of all, rest time could well become the time that children and educators look forward to.
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
How to Develop an Effective Early Years Curriculum that includes Performing Arts to Support NQS & EYLF Prepared by Galina Zenin
t the beginning of 2009, a quiet and insecure five year old boy walked into a kinder room… He was very shy, but extremely clever and intelligent for his age.
“Why didn’t he go to school?” asked some parents. Only his mother and kinder teacher knew, that socially and emotionally he just wasn’t ready to take this big step in his life. The first few months weren’t easy… Puzzles and constructions were his main interest, but slowly he started participating and enjoying playing instruments, making music and gradually building up his confidence and friendships. At the end of the year concert he was on a big stage with other children, singing and dancing their hearts out…He was overjoyed with excitement to perform in front of his family and a large audience. It was the time when this boy started to shine. In February 2010 I was invited to a private party. Suddenly, a confident and happy six year old school boy ran towards me and wrapped his arms around me. He could not hold back his excitement as he shared his news: school was great, but he was also auditioning for a theatre kids company!
So, …how do we develop an Early Years Curriculum that not only has interesting and educational experiences for children, but has life changing experiences too! After teaching music to children for more than twenty-seven years, I can confidently say that music can change lives. I have seen shy children blossom and become leaders, I have seen emotional and hyperactive children learn to share and be patient, I have seen children with special needs start to speak and dance with partners… So, what is music and why are we talking about performing arts and not just singing or playing instruments? In my approach, music for children should be a blend of many art forms. In the American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language we will read: “Performing arts are arts, such as dance, drama, and music, that are performed before an audience.”
Performing arts include music, dance, opera, theatre, magic, spoken word, musical theatre and even circus arts. When working with children, we need to find a way to engage them and deliver a message in a fun and exciting form. That’s when music becomes priceless… Incorporating music and performing arts in the Early Years Curriculum is easy. We just need to remember to always use age appropriate material and songs which are fun, meaningful, not too long, have simple lyrics and a high quality musical content. Songs which incorporate dancing routines and gross motor actions are very beneficial for brain development. Music material with use of Auslan or fine motor actions is also fantastic for all children, even young toddlers. Music pieces where children can be engaged through playing percussion instruments are extremely important for developing many skills. Storytelling through music leads to drama, musical theatre and can become a life changing experience for some children.
In every curriculum we need to look for a core, which I believe, always is the CHILD. We need to focus on the needs of the child and nourish his/ her individuality and uniqueness through a variety of activities which include music, movement, speech, drama and many other forms of performing arts. We all know that children have different abilities and learn when they are ready in their own way. However, it is our role as educators to improve and maintain educational programs for all children on a daily basis. It is our role to support and
reflect the National Quality Standard and the Early Years Learning Framework and be driven by a centre or kinderâ€™s philosophy and values. The Early Years Learning Framework is focused on learning and the role of the educator. It emphasises the essential elements of high-quality early childhood practice, including play-based pedagogies, intentional teaching and strong relationships with children and families.
which stimulates their social, intellectual and emotional growth. Sometimes, one single musical activity can develop a love of music, creativity, life skills and reflect all five Outcomes of the Early Years Learning Framework! Implementing music and performing arts in the curriculum will enrich the whole child, increase their learning capacity and enhance the quality of their life.
Introducing music into a curriculum can help us design and promote the integrated and complex learning for all children,
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012 SPRING 2011
Get ready for tax time and the new financial year now! by Mark Low, Child Care Super Financial Services Consultant
ark has a unique blend of financial services experience gained from a career spanning more than 20 years across superannuation, financial planning plus, lending and branch management in retail banking. With a wealth of knowledge in financial services, he is focused on delivering personal service to clients, as well as helping business owners and staff effectively manage their superannuation.
Managing a child care centre involves keeping on top of a range of business issues while also looking after the daily administration tasks. Paying your Superannuation Guarantee (SG) contributions is just one of these regular activities which can take up your valuable time. Paying your super online is a quick and easy process meaning you spend a fraction of the time you did before. Don’t miss claiming your tax deduction for SG contributions To claim a tax deduction for your business’s SG contributions in the 2011/12 financial year, the contributions need to be in the super fund’s bank account, on or before 30 June 2012. It is important to remember to allow a couple of days for the payment to leave your bank account and be received at your Fund. Cut the time you spend paying super contributions in half Some superannuation funds provide online services to help reduce the amount of time taken to process SG contributions. For example, Child Care Super, a part of the Guild Retirement Fund, offers a free Super PaySmart Solutions Service including both an online contribution and a clearing house facility. These provide a number of benefits that have already freed up a considerable amount of time for many childcare centre owners. Less time-consuming data entry “Writing 30 cheques manually was a long winded exercise every month”, reflected one of our clients, referring to his past method of paying SG contributions. Online you can update the contributions list yourself or upload a file straight from your payroll software. Either way, updating details and adding or removing employees is easy.
Never forget a super payment again An online solution helps to avoid penalties for late payments. As an added service, Child Care Super provides a free quarterly contribution SMS reminder service to help remind you to pay your employees’ contributions. Employers with Child Care Super can register online by visiting www. childcaresuper.com.au and clicking on the ‘contribution reminders’ tab. Free money from the government, before the rules change - help your staff take advantage of this initiative. The free money is called the co-contribution and it works like this - if you make an after-tax contribution to your super, the government matches that contribution dollar for dollar - up to $1,000. In 2011/12 the full co-contribution is available for incomes of $31,920 or less - provided you make a $1,000 personal super contribution and meet a few other eligibility criteria. The scheme cuts out altogether for incomes over $61,920. You can download a copy of the Co-contribution Fact Sheet that has all the details at www.childcaresuper.com.au. What’s changing? While the co-contribution will remain in place for the 2012/13 financial year, it will be less generous, with the value of the co-contribution reducing from $1,000 to $500, from 1 July 2012.
How you can help your staff There are two easy things you can do to help to ensure your staff don’t miss out. 1. Download and print a copy of Child Care Super’s Cocontribution Fact Sheet (see above) and place it on your noticeboard. 2. Include an article about the co-contribution on your intranet or in your staff newsletter. We can supply an article – just give me a call to arrange.
Any questions? Feel free to contact me directly on (07) 3230 8518 or call our Customer Service Team on 1800 060 215 if you have any questions at all. Alternatively, visit us online at www.childcaresuper.com.au any time of the day or night!
This article contains information of a general nature only. It is not intended to constitute the provision of advice. Before acting on any information you should consider its appropriateness having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. Prior to making a decision in relation to any financial product you should consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) in deciding whether to acquire or continue to hold the product. The PDS is available from www.childcaresuper.com.au or by calling 1800 060 215. Guild Trustee Services Pty Limited ABN 84 068 826 728, AFS Licence No. 233815, RSE Licence No. L0000611 as trustee for Child Care Super (part of the Guild Retirement Fund) Fund Registration No. R1000030, ABN 22 599 554 834.
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
Inclusion: The right to belong Prepared by -Andrea Brownlow, Practice Advisor, Brisbane Inclusion Support Agency
he right to belong is a crucial element of the Early Years Learning Framework. The principles of belonging, inclusion and respect for diversity are woven through this and other frameworks that have been rolled out over the last few years to support early childhood education and care. They are part of the Government’s commitment to addressing disadvantage, “Closing the Gap” and ensuring social inclusion for all Australian children.
Educators demonstrate inclusive practice every day as a natural process without even thinking about it. • When you ensure that Piper wears her glasses at childcare and places them in their case at sleep time you are responding to her ‘additional need’. • When Raza, who has limited English, is teary and fretful, you give him extra attention and use lots of natural gesture to help him understand what is happening. • When you notice Alex becoming overly rough in his play, you realise he has a strong need for regular physical activity and adjust your program so that he has opportunities to move his body and let-off excess energy. These are all examples of responding to the unique needs of individual children and demonstrate quality inclusion. Quality educators constantly adapt and re-think their goals to meet the needs of all children in their care.
But mention the words, ‘disability’, ‘refugee’, ‘Indigenous’ or 'non-English speaking' and educators’ natural instincts can be high-jacked by feelings of apprehension and lack of confidence. This is when you’re likely to hear comments such as: “I don’t have the skills to have this child in my room.” “I don’t have the time to include this child.” “I don’t have enough knowledge – I’m scared I’ll do the wrong thing." These are the sorts of inner dialogues that often run concurrently in our brain alongside our belief in the principles of social equity and fairness. While the heart may be willing, how does this belief translate into daily practice for an educator who is feeling unsure or lacking in the necessary skills?
Research indicates that teacher’s attitudes are the single most important factor in determining how favourably they react to the prospect of including a child with additional needs. Research also shows that the best way to influence attitudes is through knowledge, training and support. (Campbell, Gilmore & Cuskelly, 2003) How well-equipped are you to practice inclusion? The Australian Government’s Inclusion and Professional Support Program (IPSP) was established to promote and maintain high quality, inclusive education and care. It aims to increase the knowledge and skills of educators through professional development, advice and access to additional resources and support. Inclusion support agencies Inclusion Support Agencies (ISAs) are a part of the IPSP and play a crucial role in providing support to child care services to help them build their capacity to provide a quality inclusive environment where all children feel a sense of belonging, including those with additional needs. Children with additional needs are from the following priority groups: • Children from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander & Australian South Sea Islander backgrounds • Children who have a disability, including children with high supports needs • Children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds • Children with a refugee or humanitarian intervention background who have been subject to torture and trauma, either in their country of origin or during their refugee experience.
Who is eligible for support: Australian Government Approved Child Care Services ( AGACCS) that are eligible to access inclusion support include: Child Care services approved for Child Care Benefit (CCB) and Budget Based Funding (BBF) Programs including: - Long Day Care Services - Outside School Hours Care services (including Vacation Care) - Family Day Care - Occasional Care - In-home Care services - Flexible / innovative services - Mobile Child Care services - Multifunctional Aboriginal Children's services - Indigenous playgroups
- Indigenous Outside School Hours Care and Enrichment Programs - Crèches - Innovative Child Care Service Centres
To request support: If you would like support from an Inclusion Support Agency contact your local ISA to discuss your needs. (There are 13 ISAs throughout Queensland. To find your nearest ISA visit the DEEWR website.)
ISAs can offer a variety of supports including:
PH: Brisbane ISA: 3621 5300;
• Development of a Service Support Plan – a tool used to identify your service’s strengths, needs and goals to enable you to create a quality inclusive environment.
Gold Coast ISA: 5595 8999;
• Access to: - Specialist Equipment - The General Resources Library - Professional Development & Support - Bicultural Support - Funding through Flexible Support Funding and Inclusion Support Subsidy.
Logan/Redlands ISA: 3801 6200; SW Qld/Darling Downs ISA: 4688 3930. To view more details of the Inclusion and Professional Support Program visit: http://www.deewr.gov.au/Earlychildhood/ Programs/ChildCareforServices/ SupportFamilyCCS/Pages/ InclusionSupportProgram.aspx Reference Campbell, J., Gilmore, L., & Cuskelly, M. (2003) Changing student teachers’ attitudes towards disability and inclusion. Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability, Vol.28, No. 4, pp. 369-379, December 2003.
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
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Improve your Outlook and free up 2-3 working weeks a year. Prepared by - Debbie Mayo-Smith, Best-selling author and productivity authority
es, you read the title correctly. This article will help you free up 2-3 working weeks a year if you receive a lot of email. If you have responsibility for generating income –these tips can help you sell more, as well as improve communication and work flow.
Working in Outlook probably gobbles up several hours of your day and is a major pain point. Right? Unfortunately you can’t ignore it. It’s where you receive work requests. Where you communicate with staff, clients, family. Where you get news. Where you set your appointments and meetings. If that’s not enough, the change to the ribbon format in 2007 and 2010 changed everything that was familiar. Here are five out of hundreds of tips from my new book Conquer Your Email Overload. They’ll help you work more effectively both easing your pain and enhancing your gain. I’ve taken my ten years of learning, and put it into a very easy to read book. It’s in a problem/solution format that focuses on where you’d like to improve most; in communication, sales, workflow, response management, customer service. Imagine accomplishing this by simply making a few simple tweaks to the way you work. Why not begin with these five tips? 1. Forget typing details: Drag and Drop You’ll love this tip! Used creatively drag and drop can replace cut and paste and typing from scratch. Take incoming email and drag, then drop into contacts, calendar, or task folders to transform that email into a new item. An email dropped into Contacts creates a new contact for the sender. Take their signature, drag and drop the information into the respective contact fields. Even better, you can highlight text within an email and drag and drop that instead of the entire email. Where: Anywhere within Outlook
2. Your personal inbox secretary: Rules
5. CRM Tool: People Pane
This function used cleverly can save you at least 15 minutes a day – 2 weeks a year. It can automatically read your incoming or outgoing emails, then perform the tasks you set.
New to 2010. Microsoft has replicated the information you would normally find in a Contact’s Activity tab (2003/2007) and placed it in a new pane at the bottom of an email when viewed in the Reading Pane.
Use Rules to bundle CC’s and BCC’s; Put emails in a folder, forward, answer, delete. Perform routine responses; Sort through irrelevant emails; Focus on important ones. Where: 2003-7: Tools>Rules; 2010: Home Ribbon > Move> Rules. 3. Be a Sales/Customer Service Superstar: Tasks. Instead of a simple current to-do list, use Tasks to grow sales by reminding yourself to follow up on outstanding proposals. Build relationships using recurring tasks to prompt you to telephone quarterly; to follow up after a certain period of time for customer service. Assign meeting action points to individuals and prompt them. Remind staff of items due like expense or sales reports.
You see all the activity you have had with that person, including Emails, Tasks, Calendar items and attachments. Where: On the View tab, in the People Pane group, click People Pane and then click Bottom (you must have your Reading Pane turned on). Best-selling author and productivity authority Debbie Mayo-Smith works with businesses that want more effective management and staff. For more free tips or to purchase Conquer Your Email Overload come to: http://www.debbiespeaks.co.nz
Where: Icon under your Sent items folder 4. Be gracious and save thousands of seconds: Reply Signature Instead of signing off (or not!) each email you forward or reply to, have it done automatically. Add your normal salutation. Set once, then forget. Where: 2003-7:Tools>Mail Format > Signatures >Replies and Forwards 2010: Open a new message > Message tab > Include group,> Signature. Then click Signatures. Click New, and assign it to the Forward & Replies.
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
PORTA LAWYERS Debt Recovery
anaging the Centreâ€™s Debts
As a Child Care provider who provides high quality services to your parents, you are entitled to be paid for your good work. However, bad debts can drive a Centre into insolvency and may even expose the proprietors to personal liability. As a result, debt recovery should be a priority for all Centres, especially in the recent global financial environment. We have all heard that â€œprevention is better than cureâ€?. If your credit policy and associated contracts are in order this will maximise your chances in debt recovery action and thereby minimise the time, emotion, energy and cost of chasing debtors. If you are chasing outstanding debts, here are some tips: 1. Be willing to negotiate. This may involve a repayment plan or even a reduced amount. Be realistic in considering offers to settle from your parents, especially if the debt is well under $1,500.00 as legal fees and outlays can quickly make recovery of smaller amounts uncommercial. 2. Keep comprehensive records. Maintain your own file of invoices, receipts, emails, correspondence and file notes of telephone conversations. This will make chasing debts far more cost efficient if you need to seek professional advice. Without supporting documentation, your job at recovery becomes more difficult. Remember your file may become evidence that is relied upon to recover the debt. 3. Review your credit policy. If you are having difficulty recovering debts from your parents, this is a timely reminder to review your contract payment terms. Parent Bonds are a useful way to ensure payment before fees escalate to the point where the debt is unmanageable by the parent. This way if a parent is centre hopping, you have the ability to immediately recover some of the debt directly from the Parent Bond. If your credit policy is reviewed from time to time this will ensure that your debt recovery is made easier and more cost efficient. 4. Seek professional legal advice. Most small to medium firms offer reasonable rates to assist you to resolve your dispute. A standard letter of demand may be in the vicinity of $150 + GST. This is sometimes sufficient incentive for parents to avoid the time and inconvenience of a legal dispute and promptly pay your outstanding account. Child Care Providers can also have a firm assist in creating a standard precedent for commencing proceedings in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) (QLD) and Magistrates Court of Western Australia (WA) to recover the debt themselves. For more information in your jurisdiction go to: http://www. magistratescourt.wa.gov.au/content/civil/default.aspx (WA) or http://www. qcat.qld.gov.au/debt-disputes.htm (QLD) or talk to your solicitor.
“Kids Alive Do the Five” Gross Motor Program Prepared and developed by - Clare Walker
lare Walker has a Bachelor of Heath Science and a Graduate Diploma in Teaching and has taught Physical Education at Somerset College, Mudgeeraba on the Gold Coast since 1998. Clare is a mother of two young children aged four and five and has a passion for promoting a healthy way of living in children of all ages. Each of the activities has maximum participation of all children in the class at the same time as well as differing levels of ability. This game can be used as a warm up activity as it really brings the group in as a whole and allows the children to focus for the lesson. KADTF = Kids Alive Do The Five
1. Musical Mats Game Equipment • Rubber mats (approx. 20 x 20 cm). I use the non slip material that can be bought at Spotlight which is used in kitchen drawers and caravans. I know Hart Sports supply rubber mats for Phys Ed classes. • Music eg. The Wiggles – “Having Fun at the Beach”, “Swim Henry Swim”, “Let’s spend a day at the Beach”, Justine Clarke – “Great Big World Under the Sea” or a song from the “Kids Alive Do the Five” CD or any song with a good skipping beat. Instructions (i) Place mats in a circular formation in an open space (ii) Each child is to stand at a mat. (iii) Explain that while the music is on children are to skip around the outside of the circle (some children at this age do not have the gross motor ability to skip, so encourage galloping which is a stepping stone to skipping or walking). When the music stops they are to find a mat – it does not have to be the mat closest to them they can move across the circle. No child is ever “out”. (iv) Repeat for the length of the song or close to. Extension (# 1) Play game as explained above but this time when the music stops incorporate actions when the children get to their mat based on the “Kids Alive Do The Five” (“KADTF”) Motto. The teacher can call out an action when the children are at their mat and the children do the action. Use Karoke version of “Do the Five” from KADTF CD. Suggested actions: 1. Fence the pool – Children stand upright, arms out to the side parallel to the ground representing a fence. 2. Shut the gate – Children stand upright, with fingertips on sternum, elbows bent, arms parallel to the group representing shutting a gate. 3. Teach your kids to swim it’s great – Children standing upright doing a freestyle/Australian Crawl swimming action with their arms. Another extension is that when the teacher says “teach your kids to swim” – the children reply “it’s gre at”. 4. Supervise watch your mate – Children stand upright and bring hand to forehead in a salute pose. Extension with children saying “watch your mate”. 5. Learn how to Resuscitate – Children do a Resus movement with their hands.
2. Parachute Games This game will work well with the ‘Blowing Bubbles’ song from the KADTF CD – I have never met a child that does not enjoy playing with a parachute.
(a) Bubbles Game Equipment • Parachute • Music • Balloons or hand held bean bags (10 in total to complement the song) to act as bubbles on the parachute Instructions (i) All children are to place two hands on the parachute. Balloons / bean bags placed in the middle of the parachute. (ii) While the song is on, the children try and keep the balloons / bean bags “bubbles” up in the air – literacy exercise here as well with the counting. Extension (#1) Music stops – parachute stays still – how high can we get the bubbles in the air.
(b) ‘Boo’ and ‘Owl’ Game – traditional game cat and mouse. Equipment • Boo has alien antennae – you could easily make something up with a headband and polystyrene balls so this game also involves dressing up with the children taking on a role playing perspective in this game. • Owl could wear some sort of goggles that are easily put on. • Parachute • Music – suggestion “Wise Owl” or “We’re not scared of you Boo” if you wish Instructions (i) All children using two hands hold onto the outside of the parachute. Nominate one child to be “Boo” and the other “Owl”. The parachute is the “water” – the children act as the “fence” surrounding the water – Owl tries to save Boo by catching him. (ii) Rotate the children so they all get a turn.
CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
KASS CONNECTIONS Prepared by - Linda McConville, Operational Project Manager, KASS
e are well into the year now and it is hard to believe that the Kindergarten Advisory Support Service (KASS) has been operating and supporting services and teachers for the past six months. Where does the time go?
To date, KASS has engaged with over 300 services across Queensland and more than 40 Early Childhood Teachers, providing support, advice and information on the Queensland Kindergarten Funding Scheme (QKFS). KASS road trips are being planned over the next 6 months. The first Road Trip commenced in early June. I travelled in my little red KASS car to deliver presentations in Toowoomba, Kingaroy, Bundaberg and Hervey Bay. Service visits included the towns of Dalby, Wondai, Murgon, Gayndah, Cherbourg, Gin Gin, Childers, Torbanlea and Maryborough. It was great to meet everyone and discuss KASS and QKFS with you. Thank you for making me feel welcome. There will be more planned for the remainder of the year. Emails will be sent to services beforehand to inform of places, times and venues. Information will be placed on our Facebook page and our new website www.kass.net.au. We will be continuously updating information – please visit the site and give us your feedback. Thank you to all services, teachers, providers and educators who have engaged with KASS and become a member. We trust you enjoyed receiving your certificate of engagement as acknowledgement. Becoming an Approved Kindergarten Program Provider Becoming an approved kindergarten program provider has many benefits. Long day care services can access government funding through the Queensland Kindergarten Funding Scheme (QKFS) to offset the cost of providing a teacher-led approved kindergarten program. Providing funding to long day care services to deliver kindergarten programs provides more choice for Queensland families and creates new opportunities for long day care services. Long day care services can now apply for funding to deliver a kindergarten program at any time throughout the year. Under the
rolling funding program, services may also be entitled to have their funding backdated to the beginning of the quarter in which they submit their application. To download the QKFS application form, please visit http://dete.qld.gov/ earlychildhood/service/kindy-prog-longday.html. For advice and assistance in completing your application form, please contact me on 1300 4 KINDY. Services can apply in advance of securing an appropriately qualified kindergarten teacher. $5000 Enhancement Grant for eligible long day care services Eligible long day care services are invited to apply for a one-off $5,000 grant to improve their facilities and resources for kindy-aged children. If you meet all the criteria for delivering an approved kindergarten program by 31 July, including engagement of a qualified teacher, you can apply for this grant. The grant can be used by eligible services to purchase equipment to support delivery of a kindergarten program, including educational materials, toys, playground equipment, whitegoods and electronic equipment. The funding can also be used to support services’ marketing activities to increase kindergarten program enrolments through open days or developing promotional materials. To be eligible to apply services must be: • approved as a long day care service to receive Commonwealth Child Care Benefit (CCB) payments on behalf of eligible families • an approved kindergarten program provider or eligible for funding under the Queensland Kindergarten Funding Scheme effective 31 July 2012. Application forms are available on the department’s website at http://www.dete. qld.gov.au/earlychildhood/service/egrantlongdaycare.html
If you have any questions about this funding program or require information or support in completing your application, please email LDC.EnhancementGrant@ deta.qld.gov.au or call the Kindy Hotline on telephone 1800 4 KINDY (1800 454 639). Applications close on 10 August 2012, so you still have time to apply. Promoting your approved kindergarten program Did you know you can build awareness in your community of your approved kindergarten program to encourage enrolments? New promotional material is available from the department. Services can order copies of the new Enrol Now flyer, and Kindy Counts brochure and A3 poster by phoning the Kindy Hotline on 1800 4 KINDY (1800 454 639). For more promotional advice, services can download the Promoting Your Kindergarten Program tip sheet from the department’s website at www.qld.gov.au/kindy What is Teacher Registration and Teacher Recognition and how does this relate to the QKFS? Teacher registration with the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) The QCT is a Queensland government statutory body that regulates and enhances the professionalism of teachers in Queensland. QCT sets and upholds contemporary professional teaching standards in the best interests of Queensland students. For further information refer to www.qct.edu.au. Teacher registration is a function of the QCT. Teacher registration promotes the teaching profession as well as maintaining and improving quality teaching. Anyone who wishes to teach in Queensland schools must be registered with the QCT. Teacher Recognition under the QKFS Teacher recognition is a departmental process linked to securing funding under the QKFS. The process requires teachers
who deliver a funded kindergarten program to apply on the Teacher Recognition application form and have their qualification recognised. The applicant teacher will receive a Letter of Recognition Kindergarten Teacher with a QKFS number.
kindergarten program must hold QCT registration received prior to 1 Jan 2012 (refer: Early Childhood Education and Care Services National Regulation: s242 and http://www.dete.qld.gov.au/earlychildhood/ service/kindy-prog-long-care.html ).
QCT registration is required for some of the department’s kindergarten teacher recognition options (2, 3 & 4) under the QKFS. Teachers who deliver a funded
If a teacher applies for a position at your service as a kindergarten teacher and produces this letter, this means they satisfy the requirements of the QKFS.
If they apply for a funded kindergarten teaching position in your service and do not hold a teacher recognition letter (with QKFS number) then they must have their qualifications recognised by the department. The Teacher Recognition Application form can be downloaded at: http://www.dete.qld. gov.au/earlychildhood/workforce/actionplan/join-workforce/kindy-teacher-recog. html.
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CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
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CHILDCARE QUEENSLAND NEWS - Autumn 2012
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